Basketball (M)

Men's Basketball stay on top with overtime win over Mars Hill

SALISBURY, N.C.. -- Catawba rallied from a nine-point deficit in the final 10 minutes to earn a 97-92 overtime win over visiting Mars Hill in South Atlantic Conference men’s basketball action on Wednesday night at Goodman Gym. The Indians remain on top of the league standings, improving to 19-5 overall and 9-2 in the SAC. Mars Hill falls to 10-16 and 3-8. Catawba trailed 69-60 with 9:35 remaining following a three-pointer by Mars Hill’s Walt Baxley (Winston-Salem, N.C.). The Indians drew within three at 69-66 on a pair of free throws by Helgi Magnusson (Reykjavik, ICELAND) with 8:05 left, but a three-pointer by Richie Covington (Georgetown, Ky.) put the Lions up 72-66. The Indians would eventually tie the score at 74-74 after a three-pointer by Jamel Hamilton (Virginia Beach, Va.) and two free throws by Zach Snyder (Lexington, N.C.) with 5:59 to go. Two free throws by Brian Graves (Newport News, Va.) gave Catawba a 76-75 lead with five minutes left. A Covington three-pointer put the Lions back on top with Snyder tying the game on two more free throws. Magnusson gave the Tribe an 80-78 lead, but Covington’s fourth three-pointer of the night gave Mars Hill a 81-80 edge with 2:07 to play. Magnusson put Catawba pack on top with a pair of free throws, but Jeremiah Tinch (Calhoun Falls, S.C.) hit three-of-four from the stripe to give Mars Hill an 84-82 lead with 54 seconds remaining. Hamilton tied the game from the line with 36 seconds left and Baxley’s three-point attempt in the final seconds was off the mark. Mars Hill grabbed a quick two-point lead in overtime, but layups by Graves and Jolly Manning (Rocky Mount, N.C.), with 2:53 left, gave Catawba the lead for good. Catawba made 7-of-8 at the line in the final 1:39 to secure the win. Magnusson clinched the game with two free throws with five seconds remaining. Magnusson led Catawba with 26 points, going 13-of-19 at the line. Graves added 16 points, while Hamilton and Snyder added 14 each off the bench. The 14 points were a career-high for Snyder, playing his first year of basketball after four stellar seasons as a pitcher for the Tribe baseball team. Baxley tossed in 28 in a losing effort for Mars Hill. Tinch had a double-double with 15 points and 14 rebounds, while Covington added 12 points and Stephano Jackson (Winston-Salem, N.C.) 10. Four Mars Hill players fouled out and Jackson was ejected with 16:29 to play after a second technical foul. Catawba tied a school record with 49 free throw attempts and was one shy of the record for made with 37. The Lions were 22-of-27 at the stripe. #####

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